Thursday, December 24, 2015

Presidential Candidates - #15 Hillary Clinton

December 4th, we traveled to Ft. Dodge, Iowa to listen to Hillary Clinton speak at Iowa Central Community College.  
Thirty-five minutes before the scheduled start, the local campaign manager took the stage to speak about why he plans to vote for Hillary Clinton.  After that we all waited till 5 minutes after the scheduled start when Labor Secretary Thomas Perez arrived with Clinton.  Perez spoke for 20 minutes, and then handed the meeting over to Secretary Clinton.

Miscellaneous Facts: Clinton is 68 years old.  She is the granddaughter of English and Welsh immigrants, and she also has Scottish and French ancestry.  Hillary Clinton is a Methodist, has been married to Bill Clinton since 1975, has one daughter, and is 5 feet 7 inches tall.
Created with www.readwritethink.org's Timeline Generator.  Click to enlarge.
Labor Secretary Tom Perez' Introduction
If you want to grow jobs, put a Democrat in the White House.  The Republicans left us in the worst ditch in 2008.  Hillary Clinton will finish the unfinished business Barack Obama has begun.  There are some people who seem to want to turn the American dream into the American nightmare.  What we need is a progressive Democrat.  
Hillary graduated from Yale and could have gotten a job on Wall Street, but instead she got a job helping children with the Children's Defence Fund.  She is a good listener, and she treats sanitation workers with the same respect with which she would treat anyone else.  Make history in 2016 and elect a woman President of the United States!
Clinton's Speech
Just recently we saw an ISIS terrorist attack.  We need to support law enforcement; this will be a long struggle.  We must defeat ISIS through air, ground, and cyber-attacks.  The U.S. needs to lead an air coalition.  I don't want U.S. troops on the ground, but we will assist others who will fight ISIS on the ground.  ISIS is using the internet to distribute propaganda as well as to communicate and direct operations.  We must meet and defeat them there. And we need to identify ISIS and would-be ISIS terrorists from access to weapons of war.  Republicans will not do anything to stop people on the no-fly list from buying weapons.  If you're not safe enough to fly, you aren't safe enough to buy a weapon.  Close the gun-show and other loopholes, and institute gun safety measures.

I have an infrastructure plan.  I'm glad Congress passed the highway bill, but we have to do more.  There are serious bottlenecks in our rail system.  Time is money.  We invented the airplane, but today we don't have one airport listed among the top 25 airports in the world.  Our ports are far behind, and it's costing U.S. jobs and profits.  All this undermines our economy; we need to make sure our transportation system works better.  

I'm one of those running for President who actually wants you to look at the facts.  The economy is better when Democrats are in office.  Bill Clinton started his term in office with a bad economy.  By the time he left office, there were more jobs, higher incomes, and more people out of poverty.  We had a balanced budget and a surplus!  I joined the Senate in 2001 with glowing ideas of how we would use that surplus to pay back our debt.  Then came the Republicans, and we had the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.  Nine million Americans lost their jobs and five million lost their homes.  Obama doesn't get the credit he deserves for digging us out of that ditch!

Under my presidency, we would continue what Obama has begun, and work to give Americans a wage raise.  No, this won't be my husband's--or Obama's--third term.  This will be my first, but I know what works, and I will do what works.

Why am I running for President?  My father was the son of immigrants.  He graduated during the Great Depression and hopped a freight train to Chicago to find a job.  My mother was abandoned by her parents and sent to live with her grandparents, who didn't want her either.  She became a housemaid at the age of 14.  Her employers showed her kindness, and arranged so that she could have time to go to school while still working for them.  She was able to see the possibility of a better future.  I just had a grandchild born, and I will work to help her pursue her dreams, but that's not enough.  What kind of country will she grow up in?  This shouldn't be a country where you have to be the grandchild of a former President to be able to pursue your dreams.  I want to make sure every child has the same chance my granddaughter has to live up to her God-given potential.
Townhall Questions

Q: Will you, as President, work to combat poverty and disease?
A:  I'll do what I can to make sure we are dealing with it.  It's important to remember that whatever the government gives, private individuals and organizations give more.  Unlike in times past, the world is now all inter-connected.  Diseases like ebola can end up here.  We need to lead the world in combating disease and in combating poverty, even if for selfish reasons--so they can be our customers.  With climate change, diseases will start to move north.  When we combat these diseases, we aren't just trying to help people somewhere far away, we're trying to protect ourselves before the diseases come here.  

Q: What would you do as President to help caregivers and end Alzheimer's?
A:  How many people here have a close friend or family member who has suffered from Alzheimer's? [Many hands around the room were raised.]  In 10 years, every hand will be raised if this problem is not addressed.  People are living longer, and their families are sacrificing to keep their loved ones at home.  I plan to work for a $6000 tax credit to help families caring for a member with Alzheimer's.  By caring for family members at home, they save us money;  it's much cheaper than if they institutionalized family members with Alzheimer's.

In a few weeks, I will have a comprehensive Alzheimer's plan ready for allocating funds to research and intervention at the earliest stages of the disease.  It will be a big investment, but we will make real progress.  It will be a high priority.

Q: My daughter has college debt.  What will be done to help those with college debt?
A:  We have to make college affordable, and community college should be free.  I'm not saying college should be free for all.  We'll pay for the working people and poor, but not for Trump's kids.   We should partner with the states to get them back to funding higher education.  Keep costs down, and support those going to college, but those we support should also be required to work a little--maybe 10 hours a week.  I worked, and I believe there's a dignity in working 

Students already in debt should be allowed to refinance, and after 20 years their debts should be forgiven.  Students should also be able to use Pell Grants to help cover living expenses.  In Arkansas, we had a single-parent student fund that helped with living expenses.  Much can be done to help young people.

Q: The Affordable Care Act is awesome, but my insurance premiums are up 50% this year.  It's also confusing that there are so many prices for the exact same pill.  Do you have a plan to help get the cost down?
I defend the Affordable Care Act, but I also realize we have to improve it.  We have to get costs down.  We already have money in the game through the FDA which tests drugs, but we have the highest drug prices in the world because Medicare cannot negotiate with drug companies.  The Canadian government negotiates and they get their drugs for half price.  We need to take away the drug companies' tax benefits for advertising, and have that money spent on research instead.  I'm sure you've all seen their commercials on tv: they show a lovely beach or field, and in the background you hear a voice telling you how you should take this drug, but possible side effects include having your nose fall off.  Drug companies take advantage of the tax benefits.  We need everything to be transparent.
Q: This year we didn't get an increase in Social Security benefits because there was no cost of living increase, but everything seems more expensive.  Why is this?
A: It's because of the way the cost of living is calculated: it's the market basket average. This year the overall cost stabilized because the price of gas is down so much, helping average everything out; but senior citizens don't drive much anyway, so they didn't get the benefit of the average.  Many were counting on the increase; I would support making sure seniors get their increase next year.

Q:  I quit my job to care for my husband who has service-related injuries.  Why do benefits only cover veterans from post 9-11?  Why don't they cover Vietnam veterans as well?  My dad is caring for my mom who has Alzheimer's.  We need help, but it's not there.
A: [Clinton hugs the lady.]  Thank you.  We are not taking care of our caregivers.  We need to at least give respite help.  I want there to be paid family leave, and I'd like to see a benefit calculated for people who drop out of the workforce to take care of their loved ones.  I'll have a team member talk with you after the meeting to see if there is anything we can do to help.  If we can help you now, we will.  If not, then I'll help you as President.

Tom Perez: [Gives the lady his contact info.] We need to help vets get jobs.  Caregivers, the people doing God's work, get paid less.  And when we try to fix the minimum wage loophole for caregivers, we get concerned letters saying paying caregivers minimum wage & overtime would be the end of the world.  Look at the Republican debates: they don't talk about caregivers.  How can someone working 80 hours only make $400?  That is not who we are as a nation.

Closing Statement
We need your help.  How many of you have been to a caucus before?  [show of hands] It's time to send a strong message about real problems.  The other side does not care about these issues.  Times are hard for families, and costs are out of control.  We will deal with the big problems, and find common ground with Congress while standing our ground on the issues that matter. 
Further Resources:  You can visit Hillary Clinton's website to learn more about her and read her stance on the important issues.  You can also read about her on Wikipedia.

Clinton's books are available on Amazon: It Takes a Village (1996), Dear Socks, Dear Buddy (1998), An Invitation to the White House (2000), Living History (2003), Hard Choices (2015).

My Remarks:  After everything I had heard about her, I was very surprised by how nice Hillary Clinton was.  She seemed very knowledgeable, although I disagree with most of her views.  I was also impressed by how well-organized the event was.  Staff collected items the audience wanted autographed, and after Clinton had greeted everyone, all the souvenirs were autographed very neatly and returned to us.  
Disclaimer: Candidates' speeches are reconstructed from my imperfect notes.  If you notice any mistakes, just let me know.  I would not intentionally misrepresent anyone's position.  I am not endorsing any candidate or candidate's position at this time, and no candidate has endorsed me.  And yes, I do realize that often speeches are to some extent propaganda, but it's interesting to me to see the points candidates consider as most important.
For my personal political views, please see this article.

38 comments:

  1. I think the biggest case against her (for many Democrats) is her losing her 08 bid. I didn't like how bitter the fight against Obama was and I'm not liking how the bitter battle against her and Bernie is turning out.

    That's one of the biggest dumb things that happens in politics. When they go from foes to supporters. Take Jeb Bush, he really can't stand Donald Trump but he's made it apparent he'll support him over Clinton. Could you not just say "I'm staying out of it" even if you really want your party to win?

    Candidate B before primary is over: Candidate A is wrong for this country

    Candidate B after primary is over: Candidate A is the right choice for this country

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    1. Good point. Ron Paul did not endorse Romney after losing the nomination bid to him, but he was definitely the exception; most of the candidates are pretty loyal to their party. Bush is going to have a very hard time bringing himself to support Trump if Trump is the Republican nominee. I wish the Republican candidates didn't give each other such a bad time!

      The Clinton/Sanders database incident was not pretty, but the two candidates handled it relatively nicely on tv for the debate.

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  2. One thing for sure; no one will become president without seeing Bethany first. Tim ( Bethany's Papa)

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    1. I'm very happy we've gotten to see basically all the candidates this year! Thanks Papa!

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  3. From Arkansas...Bill never got my vote. She won't either. If the world only knew...

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  4. Merry Christmas to you and your family Bethany.

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    1. Thanks! I hope you have a very happy New Year!

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  5. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas darling! Liuba x

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  6. I am very impressed with your work at hearing and researching all these candidates. Good for you! I would have a hard time sitting through a Hillary speech, and will not be voting for her.

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    1. Glad to hear! But it was interesting to listen to her speak.

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    2. Bethany, you wrote very well about what Hillary had to say, but you then said that you disagreed with the majority of her views. Which views that you wrote about Hillary did you disagree with?
      Wes

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    3. Hi Wes, thanks for stopping by my blog! I agree with Hillary that student loans should be re-financeable, and that's about it. In general, Secretary Clinton seems to view government as a solution to problems, while I view big government as a problem itself. I listed what I view as the pros and cons of each candidate in this post. Most of it is somewhat irrelevant now that most of the candidates have dropped out of the race.

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  7. Your candidate series continues to be interesting! Though I won't be voting for Hillary either, I think she does have a couple interesting ideas from what you have written. Also that pic of you and her is adorable:)
    Blessings,
    Aimee
    PS: Hope your Christmas was a good one!

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    1. Thank you Aimee! It would be hard to find anyone with all bad ideas and no good ones. I think even Bernie Sanders has a few good ideas. I hope you had a wonderful time over the holidays. Take care!

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  8. Thanks for another helpful post, Bethany. I hope that you and your family are having a lovely Christmas celebration. xx

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  9. "Paid family leave?" Sheesh. PLAN AHEAD before you pop out a kid. We planned for six of 'em and no-one gave us "paid family leave."

    Caregiving I can have a bit more sympathy for. No-one expects to be disabled later in life, or rather, that is rathermuch like insurance; we all ought contribute just a little so their lives are a bit more bearable.

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    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and for stopping by, Christine!

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  10. First of all I'd like to congratulate you for your activity attending the speeches of the candidates. After reading your post I think that the next President of the USA will have a big challenge leading his country. Your pictures are great. Best wishes for the new year!

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    1. I think that is one thing everyone can agree on; whoever wins does have his/her work cut out! A wonderful New Year to you as well!

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  11. Feliz ano novo!
    Seguimos nossa caminhada na construção de um mundo mais justo, fraterno, humano, harmonioso e de doação.
    Todos somos promotores da Paz...que começa em nossos corações e se estende a tudo que nos rodeia!!!
    Obrigada por fazer parte da minha história de vida!
    UM ABENÇOADO 2016!!!!

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    1. Happy New Year and blessings to you as well! It is awesome to know so many wonderful bloggers like you.

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  12. Hi Bethany, I have to congratulate you on your series of posts about the 2016 Presidential Candidates. You have just done an excellent job with this. I enjoyed the report here on Hillary Clinton. Unless something major happens in the coming months I expect her to be the Democratic candidate and would not be at all surprised to see a Clinton/Sanders ticket, although I would prefer a ticket with at least one much younger candidate. How about you … what do you predict for the Ds? The R side is a little more complex and difficult to predict, although Trump is clearly a favorite at the moment. The curious thing to me is the poll showing that more than 50% of all voters would be embarrassed to have Mr. Trump as President. Given that, would they vote for him? What a dilemma for the GOP leaders. It is sure going to be interesting to see how things go in 2016. And, with that, I will leave you with a wish for a Happy New Year! I’m looking forward to another year following Liberty or Death! Thank you for all your thoughtful comments on my blog in 2015.

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    1. Thank you for your thoughtful comments as well, John. I always look forward to them. It is hard to imagine anyone other than Hillary Clinton winning the nomination at this point. O'Malley did have a nice line in the last Democratic debate about Clinton and Sanders being from another (older) generation though...and I agree that it might be wise to have someone younger on the ticket with Clinton. A lot of young people do seem to like Sanders, but having both him and Clinton on the ticket might be pressing it age-wise. It will be very interesting to see how the Republican nomination pans out! Happy New Year!

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  13. I can't believe you're already on #15! Wow! You have put a lot of work into these articles! Thanks for sharing them with us Bethany!

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    1. Ah! Now I just need to find enough motivation to write about Candidate #16, and then I'll be done! Thanks for stopping by, Lydia!

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  14. Wow...I'm perusing your current blog posts and find myself VERY impressed that you are witnessing first hand the candidates that are promising to run our country. High Five.

    I also enjoyed your moonlit photo and the runners' narration in the one post. I too would ride a bike alongside!!

    Happy New Year to you and your family.

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    1. Happy New Year to you as well. Thanks Anni!

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  15. Bethany, first of all a very happy and healthy New Year to you! I hope you had a very Merry Christmas with your family :)

    I'm blown away by the amount of work and effort you put into those blog posts about the candidates. It is absolutely amazing! I usually don't get too much information here about the candidates so it is very interesting for me to read every single one's speeches and answers to those questions.
    Thank you for sharing this with all of us!

    Have an amazing Sunday.
    Lots of hugs to you,
    Beate

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    1. Beate, good wishes and prayers for you as well. Have a very happy New Year! Meeting all the candidates has been a lot of fun, but I am glad to be almost done with this series. Take care!

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  16. Really interesting! I love that you're getting to see so many candidates. I thought her answers on the Afforadable Care Act and college tuition/debt were especially interesting! Thank you for sharing!

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